Boston's cultural calendar is seemingly infinite. Satisfy your love of 'the arts' and see our recommendations for interesting things to do, see & hear this holiday season. 

The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Musical

WhereBoch Center | Wang Theatre

WhenNov 26, 2021 

The Elf on the Shelf: The Musical is the thrilling spectacle of music and dance that transports audiences to the North Pole to glimpse the magical lives of Santa's Scout Elves. Featuring an original story and score, dazzling sets and costumes, and heartfelt moments that will bring the family together, this joyous and uplifting celebration will leave audiences captivated by the splendor of the season. 

More information here. 

The Nutcracker  

Where: Citizens Bank Opera House

When: Nov 26-Dec 26, 2021

Take time for joy with your family and friends at New England's most beloved holiday tradition. The Nutcracker conjures the childlike wonder in us all with brave toy soldiers, dancing snowflakes, and a tree that grows to the sky.  

More information here.


Lightwire Theater's A Very Electric Christmas

Where: Emerson Colonial Theatre

When: Nov 27, 2021

Brighten your holidays with Lightwire Theater's A Very Electric Christmas. Semi-finalists on "America's Got Talent," the internationally recognized troupe presents electroluminescent artistry, poignant storytelling, and performance in complete darkness. The story follows a young bird named Max and his family as they begin their journey south for the winter. When Max gets blown off course and ends up at the North Pole…his adventure begins! Dancing toy soldiers, caroling worms, and performing poinsettias, light up the stage.

More information here. 


Holiday Pops 2021

Where: Boston Symphony Orchestra | Symphony Hall

When: Dec 2-24, 2021

Tradition returns to Symphony Hall! Rejoice as conductor Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops return for a performance filled with holiday music favorites, the jubilant Pops sing-along, and a visit from Santa Claus himself! Started in 1973 by Boston Pops Conductor Arthur Fiedler, these concerts take place in the magical atmosphere of the world-famous Symphony Hall, beautifully decorated to evoke all the magic and charm of the season.

More information here. 

A Christmas Story: The Musical 

Where: Boch Center | Wang Theatre

When: Dec 7-19, 2021 

Set in 1940s Indiana, a young and bespectacled Ralphie Parker schemes his way toward the holiday gift of his dreams, an official Red Ryder® Carbine-Action 200-Shot Range Model Air Rifle. An infamous leg lamp, outrageous pink bunny pajamas, a maniacal department store Santa and a triple-dog-dare to lick a freezing flagpole are just a few of the distractions that stand between Ralphie and his Christmas wish.

Nominated for three 2013 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, the Associated Press calls A Christmas Story: The Musical "a joyous Christmas miracle."

More information here.


Cirque Dreams Holidaze

Where: Boch Center | Shubert Theatre

When: Dec 10-12, 2021

As lights dim and music plays, an unbelievable cast of holiday storybook characters come to life, presenting an elaborate wonderland, invoking the stories behind a child's eye as they dream on the most magical of nights. Ballerinas, nutcrackers, snowmen, penguins, reindeer, ethereal aerialists, gingerbread people, carolers, and colossal ornaments fly, balance, juggle and stretch imaginations.

More information here. 

A Christmas Celtic Sojourn 

Where: Cutler Majestic Theatre

When: Dec 17-19, 2021

Brian O'Donovan's A Celtic Sojourn has entertained and enlightened audiences since 1986 as part of his 3-hour weekly radio program on WGBH radio. Now celebrating nearly two decades of holiday performances, the Christmas-time live version of the show draws on Celtic, Pagan, and Christian traditions to celebrate the season's music.  

More information here. 


Urban Nutcracker

Where: Boch Center | Shubert Theatre

When: Dec 18-23, 2021

Local dance legend Tony Williams reimagined the classic holiday tale to become a Boston inner-city story with a neon-buzz, blending the rhythms of Duke Ellington with the classical music of Tchaikovsky. Join heroine Ruby as she explores iconic Boston scenes such as Make Way for Ducklings, Top of the Hub, Chinatown, and the Boston Public Garden. The delightful story continues by following the magical journey of Ruby and her Nutcracker guide through classical ballet, tap, hip hop, jazz, flamenco, and more.

More information here.


Where: Various locations, Boston, MA

When:  Nov-Dec, 2021

From the star-studded lineup, including Luke Combs and Andrea Bocelli at TD Garden, to a concert by Tasha at the Red Room, and a virtual performance of Merry & Bright by the Boston Gay Men's Chorus, live music is back and better than ever this holiday season. And you won't want to miss Kiss 108's JingleBall featuring the Jonas Brothers, Doja Cat, Saweetie, Black Eyed Peas, Tate McRae, Bazzi, Dixie D'Amelio, and Tai Verdes on Dec 12!  

Check out more of Boston's lineup here


The Hip Hop Nutcracker 

Where: Emerson Colonial Theatre 

When:  Jan 1, 2022

A holiday mash-up for the whole family, The Hip Hop Nutcracker returns to the stage for its seventh season on tour. Directed and choreographed by Jennifer Weber, this contemporary dance spectacle is a re-mixed and re-imagined version of the classic, smashing hip hop dance and Tchaikovsky’s timeless music together into a heart-stirring and inspirational holiday event. The Hip Hop Nutcracker is brought to life by a powerhouse cast of a dozen all-star dancers, a DJ, a violinist, and MC Kurtis Blow, one of hip hop’s founding fathers, who opens the show with a short set.

More information here. 


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